November 27th, 2009

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Bubble, bubble, toil and gobble

There are so many ways in which a big pot of boiling turkey carcass is a good thing:
  • It reduces waste, putting as much of the bird as possible to use.

  • It makes the house smell of boiled turkey, a distinctly homey and holiday aroma.

  • It humidifies the house, benefiting my poor abused sinuses.

  • It means that we'll have triple-strength turkey stock to put into the freezer at the end.

  • And it means that we'll have lots of leftover, boiled-off meat, forcing us to make msmemory's famously excellent turkey pie. (I was very amused when we finally got around to trying Harrow's, and I realized that it's about half as good as what I'm used to.)
A fine collection of reasons why I so particularly like the day after Thanksgiving...
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The other reason I'm going to be busy next year

You know how things come in threes? It's that way for me on the project front. I've already mentioned Strange Boston and the upcoming heralding work. But there's one more yet.

A few months ago, the SCA's Board acknowledged that there are a lot of issues that the club is facing -- ongoing arguments about things like a fourth peerage, a slow but extremely worrying decline in membership, and so on. Fortunately, this time around they didn't fly off the handle and panic. Instead, they recognized that, honestly, nobody *really* knows what the people in the Society think about all of this. Sure, there are loud arguments about it all, but that tends to reflect the most extreme positions. And there have been some previous polls, but they've mostly been wildly unscientific in a variety of ways. This time around, they're being more principled about it: a "census" of people involved in the Society and how they view it.

So they asked for people to get involved in this project, and I volunteered. I heard back a couple of weeks ago that I'm going to be on the committee in charge of the thing. It's a pretty small group, and IMO pretty well-selected, but we're already talking about how to make the process appropriately open. Indeed, I'm encouraged by everything about the project -- among other things, the Board has explicitly stated that they want to get a clear idea of the thinking of both the members *and* the non-member participants, the hardcore and the fringe, the newbies and the old hands. All the signs are that they're going into it with the right attitude: seeing it as an opportunity to learn, without too many preconceptions about the end results.

That's just starting up now -- we're still at the "introduce ourselves and start brainstorming" stage. But I expect that I'll be looking for input and ideas here from time to time, as well as probably some assistance when we need to gear up and make the thing happen. So you'll be hearing more about this over the course of the next year...